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Tasks, tips and tools for May Follow

Here in your seasonal guide to May you will find a useful list of jobs to do in your garden and the tools you may need to do them. For quick reference jobs are in bold black and tools are in blue.

Ah. The merry month of May. Maypoles, nuts, darling buds, and talking of buds, Hawthorn May blossom is now appearing (so you can now ‘cast a clout’ if you so wish) and cowslips, primroses and geraniums are in profusion… and so are Bank Holidays, dirty great bunches of them, great days to get into the garden or on the plot as it should be getting much warmer by now.

You can keep on sowing broad beans… if you’re not fed up with them by now… but we love them. Keep sowing sweet peas, tomatoes and keep on with the weeding.

Just as everything else is flourishing so are all those couch grasses, dandelions and other little blighters you may not want visiting your garden. Get a good strong hoe 

Many hedges need a good trim or prune in May. If your pride and joy is hawthorn, escallonia forsythia or the incredibly popular privet, then they need doing. Electric hedge trimmers are great for a powered solution. (See image below)

Al-Ko HT550 Safety-Cut Electric Hedge trimmer

Believe it or not, May can be quite stormy so make sure any vulnerable plants are staked against the wind and check all your fences and greenhouse windows.

Now is the good time to earth up your potatoes, both new and main crop. Earthing up, or ridging up as it’s sometimes known, is the process of creating mounds of earth around your spuds which helps strengthen the roots and optimises the intake of water and oxygen. Use a spade or a dedicated ridging tool.  Do give it a try; you’ll be delighted by the results.

Think about transplanting brussels sprouts and tomatoes about now and don’t forget to mow your lawn…again… I know it’s a never-ending task but that is just the way it is.

Check your lawn mower if you didn’t remember to do it over the winter. Is it working well? Any blockages? Does it need new blades? Can you get them? It may be time to think about a new model. Just make sure you have a working lawn mower before the grass really starts to think about coming out for the summer. Why not consider a cordless one, no fumes no fuss and no cables. You can even get cordless mowers with rollers for a smart stripe on your lawn. (See image below)

Mountfield Princess 34LI Cordless Four-Wheel Rear-Roller Lawn Mower

Any asparagus plants you have had in for a couple of years should be flourishing by now, so harvest those spears, just below the soil surface to eat (yum) but don’t touch any plants under two years old. They still need some time to develop.

And don’t forget to watch out for pests at all times. Apparently a good time to find slugs is last thing at night, just before bedtime, with a lamp or torch. Just make sure you wear slippers. You tread on a slug in the dark with bare feet and you’ll have nightmares for months!

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